We made it to Macgapuchare base camp where we spent our final night before setting off before sunrise the next morning to see the sun rise up over the mountains from the Annapurna base camp. That evening in the hostel restaurant we overheard a guide informing his group that at this altitude, altitude sickness can occur in the early hours and if so, it is best to sit up and sip water. Well, it was just as well we heard this as during the night Liam sounded extremely wheezy and I thought he was having a nightmare, I turned and asked if he was ok to which he replied "I.......can't.........bre...athe!". Inside I was panicking but I didn't let it show and sat him up and got him some water. I said I was going to get help but he wouldn't let me go and said he would be alright. I wasn't too sure but thought I'd give him a little time to hopefully improve and after 30 minutes had passed he was slightly better. He was also far too cold and shivering loads, so I was trying to warm him and I think this is why the altitude affected him because he had been quite tense with cold. After an hour or so he was much improved and as soon as it became light we packed up and descended as altitude sickness can only be remedied by descending.
So alas, we didn't get to see the spectacular view and were only a few hours away but it wasn't worth taking the risk, I could have gone alone but I was shattered and worried for Liam and was just glad he was better. So we began our descent which was far quicker than the ascent! After an hour of walking, Liam was back to himself and we were able to make good progress and descended below the snow line and eventually out of the valley onto open flat land. We spent a night there and the next day took a local bus back to Pokhara. The bus ride was really enjoyable, kitted out in lots of colour and glittering objects with the speakers blaring out music and packed with locals, they managed to find space for us and our bags in the middle of the bus and we sat there relieved not to be using our legs!
We headed back to The North Face Inn thinking they would have space in the dormitory there for us to spend the night but unfortunately they were fully booked, so we took the belongings we'd left there and moved to a different hostel which was the last thing we wanted to do after our long trek! We were really exhausted and even though it was a 20 minute walk to the other place, by the time we arrived I was feeling extremely sick with sun stroke and as we sat in the reception area waiting for our room, it turned out that although we'd booked it online before we left the last place, they had just given it to someone else! There was no way I was walking anywhere else and the owner was really kind and apologetic and booked us a room in the hotel next door, helping take our bags. We were really thankful until we were getting ready for bed and noticed loads of ants everywhere and a a number of cockroaches under the sheets! We had to ask for another room which was thankfully so much nicer and slept there instead. We spent a couple of days recuperating and bought some pretty items and took a boat out onto the lake.